We live in an age when convenience is king, or queen if you prefer, but it’s not nearly so alliterative.
The internet is full of lists of the latest gizmos designed to make your travel that much more convenient, but what if your priority is not convenience, but style. Travelling with style is partly about having stylish accessories but it’s also about arriving at your destination without looking like you’ve just endured a ghastly ordeal. So, here are some suggestions to help you look and feel stylish when you’re travelling.
Contemporary travelling tends to be an overheated experience, even if you are travelling in the depths of winter. Trains, planes and their termini all tend to be hot and the proximity of hundreds of sticky fellow human beings only serves to exacerbate the situation.
Linen is a great material to wear when you are travelling, whether you’re a woman or a man. It’s a natural, breathable material but it also has a certain stiffness about it, so that it tends to hang away from your body, allowing air to circulate. It’s much cooler to wear than something thin and flimsy which will stick to your skin when you get hot.
Anything you wear is going to get creased when you are travelling, but linen is naturally creased so you will still look just as stylish when you arrive as when you set out. Linen is also a much more eco-friendly material than cotton, so you pick up extra style points for being environmentally aware.
A Panama Hat
Well yes, I am making the assumption that your travel destination is somewhere hot. If you are setting off to walk to one of the poles you can probably skip this particular stylish item. Panama hats are bang on trend for both women and men and with good reason.
They are the most comfortable hat to wear in hot weather and of course, they are also the most stylish. They have been celebrated as one of the hundred best designs ever created. A genuine Panama Hat, one made by one of the handfuls of expert craftsmen capable of the exquisitely fine weave for which the hats are famed, will cost you around $25,000. Fortunately, you can keep stylishly cool for a lot less than that. Panama hats look great, they are essentially a Fedora made from palm leaves, and they are light and breathable. A good one will also take a lot of punishment. Allegedly you can roll one up small enough to fit through a wedding ring.
Just how stylish you look in your sunglasses will depend on whether you have taken the time to find a pair that really suit you. They say that Wayfarers look good on everybody but not if they don’t fit. Choose a frame style and colour that suits your face and hair and make sure that they are a good fit. Perfect for people watching as you pretend to read the paper and sip an espresso at a street-side café, they also save you from squinting your way around the streets.
UV rays are dangerous and the glare from the sea and sand can be painful, so you can enjoy wearing your stylish sunglasses in the knowledge that they are keeping your eyes safe. If you wear optical glasses, then it makes sense to have your prescription lenses fitted to your sunglasses.
A Leather Travel Bag
Perhaps you use a samsonite wheelie bin and feel it serves you well but if you want to look stylish then it has to be a leather bag. A quality leather bag will last a lifetime and its appearance will improve with age. Mahi produce a range of beautiful leather bags, crafted from full-grain leather, which is the best quality leather that money can buy, and fitted with famously durable YKK zips and robust brass fittings. This is a travel accessory you can depend on and one which will attract admiring looks wherever you take it.
If a beach or a pool is part of your travel itinerary, and please say it is, then you are going to need a pair of flip flops. Sure, you can pick up a pair from a bin at the store which sells inflatable sharks, but wouldn’t you rather have something stylish? Not only will Havaianas not fall apart in the first week, but they are also available in a range of brilliantly original designs. You may think that flip flops and style are words that can’t be uttered in the same sentence, well think again.
A Stylish Watch
Travel and time are twinned. We often measure our experience of travel in terms of time and being at certain places at certain times is one of the defining experiences of travel. You will, of course, be carrying a phone and probably a tablet too but in terms of ease, neither can compare with a glance at your wrist. A quality watch is also a beautiful, eye-catching accessory, whether you are at the airport terminal or dining beneath the stars at a restaurant. The stylish traveller always wears a watch.
A Water Bottle
‘Why,’ I hear you say, ’there’s nothing stylish about a water bottle’. Oh, but there is. It’s easy to get dehydrated when you are travelling, especially when you’re flying, so drinking plenty of water is very important. And remember, the stylish traveller always arrives looking fresh. ‘But I always buy a bottle of water,’ you say. Well, don’t. More than 60 million plastic bottles end up in landfill and incinerators every day. Carrying a water bottle is stylish. If you choose a collapsible one you can carry it through passport control in your pocket and refill it in departure before you board.
A Leather Card Holder(s)
You know that bulging wallet or purse which you carry every day and which contains receipts stretching back generations? Leave it safe at home. Fillet it for the cards you’ll need and take a stylish leather cardholder or two. Get one with RFID blocking so your cards can’t be hacked.